By Ana Gonzalez
Responsible business starts with you. Whether you are a young entrepreneur leading an organization or you are a young professional at a large company, responsible business relies on your values and actions and whether or not you actively embrace transparency in your business decisions.
Entrepreneurs and young professionals today are held to a high standard and are expected to incorporate transparency into their companies early on. It is essential to be open and honest about a company’s operations with issues revolving around performance, internal processes, sourcing, pricing, and business values.
There are a few steps you can take to foster transparency, as suggested by Forbes magazine and the Ken Blanchard Companies.
Solidify your business’s core values
For everyone in your organization to be on board, you must vocalize and put an emphasis on the values of your business, for example, values such as not taking shortcuts, treating others with respect, and understanding that honesty is the best policy. By stating what your business stands for, you will help your employees and staff members understand the organization better and follow suit with these values.
To avoid a culture of gossip in your company, it is important to foster open communication between those in leadership and employees. In order to be informative, you can host meetings or write newsletters that convey information to everyone in the company.
Be true to your employees and to your customers. For example, if you are in a retail organization, do not mask prices. If your prices seem high, it is your responsibility to explain them and provide your reasoning, such as their quality and construction. Your employees and customers will appreciate the transparency behind this information.
Be candid about your experiences
It is important that as a young entrepreneur, you talk about both the successes and the failures in your career. If you do this, your organization, your employees, and your customers can better appreciate your transparency, know you have learned from your mistakes, and know that you promote a culture of learning, and they will prefer to grow with you.
Lead with integrity by example, manage with care and concern, and be dependable by following through on commitments, respecting time, and being punctual. Leaders should regularly encourage praise when deserved and provide constructive feedback when necessary.
Being an ethical and transparent leader
The YLAI Network believes that, as discussed in “The essence of a strong ethical leader,” the five attributes of a strong ethical leader include “knowing, wanting, choosing, habituating and securing the ‘good.’” By exhibiting these values, leaders can be productive, humane, empowering, trusting, and transparent.
YLAI encourages you to be ethical and authentic and to be open to change if need be. #YLAIforIntegrity motivates members to be aware of the social dynamics that take place in a company, to keep open channels of communication, and to be responsive to the needs of your employees.
YLAI Network members will benefit from fostering transparency. Effective teamwork and productivity can only take place if employees feel they work in an honest and healthy environment. To be an effective and ethical leader, transparency and honesty start with you.
Ana Paula Gonzalez is a St. Mary’s University student studying international and global studies and political science and is a content management intern for the YLAI Network.
Este artículo está disponible en español.